http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=34249

'Solar Power Brings Relief to Villagers'
By Toye Olori

LAGOS, Aug 5, 2006 (IPS) - Bishop Kodji, a small fishing and canoe carving island in the Atlantic Ocean off Nigeria's sprawling commercial hub of Lagos, has become the first village to be electrified under the Lagos State government's pilot solar energy project..

Before setting up the project, the village, with a population of 5,000, had not known electricity since its existence.

To provide services to the island, which can only be reached by boat, the state government decided to launch the solar project there in May.

Nineteen other remote villages would also benefit from the project before the end of the year, according to state government officials.

''The tropical climate makes solar energy the most viable alternative source of renewable energy in Nigeria. Harnessing the sun's energy to produce power is an imperative for rural areas where the hope of being connected to the national grid is very remote and extremely expensive,'' Kadiri Hamzat, Lagos State Commissioner for Science and Technology, said in Ikeja, capital of Lagos State, in June. He was briefing journalists about the activities of his ministry in the past one year.

Hamzat said the solar energy technology is less expensive than electricity generated by the new Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) that replaced the National Electric Power Authority (NEPA), though power supply has gone worse since its establishment. In principle, only the name has changed, NEPA staff still run the new company.
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http://www.un.org/ecosocdev/geninfo/...lar-power.html

From Africa Renewal, Vol.20 #3 (October 2006), page 10
Solar power: cheap energy source for Africa
NEPAD seeks to boost electricity supply in remote rural areas

By Itai Madamombe

Kerosene lamps and sore eyes were once routine elements of grading student homework. Solar electricity has changed that. Caroline Hombe, a 35-year-old teacher in rural Mhondoro, Zimbabwe, can go through the pile of books stacked on her table without worrying that the onset of darkness will put an end to her work. African countries, blessed with sunlight all year round, are tapping this free and clean energy source to light up remote and isolated homes that have no immediate hope of linking to their national electricity grid.
Maintaining solar panels in Mali
http://www.un.org/ecosocdev/geninfo/...0no3/solar.jpg
Maintaining solar panels in Mali: Africa can tap its plentiful sunshine to generate electricity.
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http://cleantech.com/news/3213/ethio...s-solar-energy

Ethiopia powers up with solar energy

August 8, 2008 - by David Ehrlich, Cleantech Group

Germany's Solar Energy Foundation aims to improve living conditions and foster a solar industry in Ethiopia.

The rural village of Rema in Ethiopia could become a cleantech boom-town if the work of Germany's Solar Energy Foundation continues its success in the region.

Since 2006, the foundation has installed 2,000 solar systems in Rema and in nearby Rema ena Dire, the biggest solar power project in East Africa. The project has brought power to 5,500 residents in a country where only one percent of people in rural areas have access to electricity.

The charity is led by Harald Schutzeichel, the founder and former head of Freiburg, Germany's S.A.G. Solarstrom, with the Good Energies Foundation on board as a major backer. The Good Energies Foundation is an affiliate of New York-based renewable energy investor Good Energies.
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8150391.stm

Sun energy empowers Ethiopian village

16 July 2009 15:28 UK

By Tsigue Shiferaw
BBC, Rema

Two years after the installation of a solar power project funded by international aid groups, villagers in northern Ethiopia say the sun's energy has turned their lives around.

Rema, 150 miles north of the capital Addis Ababa, is home to Ethiopia's largest solar project.

Solar Foundation representative Samson Tsegay(right) and co-worker Kidus
Samson Tsegaye (R) says people are suspicious of solar power

Here, every house in the village has electricity powered by solar lighting systems.

This is unique in Ethiopia - 80% of the population live in rural areas where only 1% of the population have access to electricity.
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http://www.unpo.org/content/view/10896/125/

Maasai: American Professors Help African Villagers Build Solar Panels

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Professors from Brandeis and Harvard have created a programme to help African villagers build solar panels to create clean electricity.

Below is an article published by The Citizen:



Where nightfall once meant only darkness in the tiny Tanzanian island of Tumbatu, now there are 200 points of light.

These solar panels are the product of a second career?s worth of vision and sweat by Mr Robert Lange, a retired Brandeis University physics professor who helps people put science to use in one of the poorest countries in southern Africa.

From a desk in his Cambridge apartment, Prof Lange runs a minuscule nonprofit that literally trades the dark smoke of a wood stove for the clean power of sunlight.

Prof Lange doesn?t give these panels away. He swaps them: Villages need to build and install four new simple but fuel-efficient cooking stoves to earn each solar unit.
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http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/gree...ican_villages/

Professor brings clean power to African villages
From Cambridge, he trades stoves for solar panels

?The project is very beautiful and helpful, and it goes well,?? says Mohammed. Nearly 200 solar panels like his have been installed on roofs in the past two years in the two villages on Tumbatu, a speck of an islet a mile off the coast of the main Zanzibar island in Tanzania.

These solar panels are the product of a second career?s worth of vision and sweat by Robert Lange, a retired Brandeis University physics professor who helps people put science to use in one of the poorest countries in southern Africa. From a desk in his Cambridge apartment, Lange runs a minuscule nonprofit that literally trades the dark smoke of a wood stove for the clean power of sunlight.

Lange doesn?t give these panels away. He swaps them: Villages need to build and install four new simple but fuel-efficient cooking stoves to earn each solar unit. The premise is that households are cutting their carbon emissions by using stoves that consume one-third less wood ? and thus earn a solar installation. The units charge a small motorbike battery, which in turn can power a few low-power devices.

?We?re trying to set up an informal carbon credit market,?? Lange said. ?We?re saying four stoves is worth about $130 in reduced emissions over eight or 10 years, and for 130 bucks we can buy and import a household-scale solar energy system, to give you lights, charge your cellphone, and run a radio.??

The bottom line is that villagers get a few watts of electric power, saving them costly kerosene and wood, and giving them several more hours of nighttime light for reading and working. And the vented brick stoves save trees that would have gone into smoky indoor cooking fires.

Many nonprofit groups are working to improve the efficiency of wood-burning stoves, and the use of solar power in Africa has grown fitfully. What?s especially innovative here is combining the two, with the goal of crafting an informal carbon trading market like the one envisioned globally to cut emissions and use more green energy.
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http://allafrica.com/stories/201004060297.html

Tanzania: EU Funds Solar Energy Project for Local Schools 'Best Ray' Gives High Hopes
3 April 2010

Arusha ? Solar panels are to be installed in all primary and secondary schools in Oldonyo Sambu and Ngarenanyuki wards in Arumeru district in an effort to promote the use of renewable sources of energy.

Energy to be generated, under the 1.5 million Euro project funded by the European Union (EU), will be used to run computers, provide light as well as for cooking in schools and households. This was revealed by Mr. Matteo Leonardi, the project manager of Oikos East Africa, an Italian non-governmental organisation which is executing the project dubbed 'Best Ray.'

He said during the inauguration of the vocational community training centre for the project at Oldonyo Sambu that promotion of solar energy was one of the initiatives taken to reduce dependence on firewood.

EU granted the money for energy support. This would also include promotion of biogas energy and improved cooking stoves of which 200 would be distributed to villagers. Two public secondary schools in the area,Oldonyo Sambu and Kisimiri will be provided with 13 computers each which will be run using solar energy.

In that way, the drive for renewable energy would not only save the dwindling forests but also promote of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). He reiterated; "All primary schools will have solar panels and all secondary schools computers and solar panels as well as solar energy-run kitchens". According to him, energy is one of the most important components of the community projects being implemented by Oikos East Africa in Arusha region.
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